A Guide to Gardening with Seedballs
November 11th, 2013 in In the Garden
Gardening with seedballs is super easy and fun – here is a quick guide to get you started.
How to scatter seedballs
Seedballs are easy to use because they don’t need to be planted – simply scatter them where you want them to grow (preferably on top of soil or compost), and let nature do the rest. Seedballs also grow well in pots and containers.
They don’t need to be broken up and should be left whole – once water has permeated the clay, the seeds will slowly begin to germinate inside the ball. Scattered seed balls should not be picked up once it’s rained, as this could damage any growing roots.
Plants that grow from seedballs don’t need thinning out – the seedball will begin to grow as a cluster of plants, but will later disperse as the clay disintegrates and disperses.
When to scatter seedballs
Seedballs can be scattered at any time of the year, although the best time is normally spring or autumn – recommended time to scatter your seedballs can be found on the product listing and on the tin itself.
Where to scatter seedballs
Seedballs should be scattered on top of soil or compost – they can also be grown in pots, containers and window boxes in your garden or on a balcony. If the area you want to plant is grassy, then it’s best to remove a layer of top-soil before scattering. More information about growing a wildflower meadow can be found on the plantlife website.
How many seedballs to use
This depends on how dense you want the flowers to be, but as a guide you should use at least twenty seed balls per square meter for your garden. If growing in a small pot, 3 – 5 seed balls should be enough. For larger pots or window boxes, 10 – 20 seed balls should do the trick.
If they’re scattered outside seedballs shouldn’t need watering, except during a really dry spell. If your seedballs are inside or under cover you should water them every 1-2 days.
Germinating & Flowering
Seeds will start to germinate when conditions are right, normally after plenty of rain and when it’s not too cold. It can sometimes take a while for seeds to begin sprouting so it’s important to be patient!
When exactly the seed ball grows and flowers will depend on the type of seed ball bought. Mixed tins contain a variety of seed species in one ball – some of these are annuals and some are perennials.
Growing wildflowers is definitely a long-term project and native UK wildflowers are slow-growers compared to many of the exotic plants common to gardens. Not only may seed balls take some time to sprout but they will also take their time to fully grow and flower. While some species will flower within the first year, many will not flower until the second year.
Seedballs will keep well for planting the next year if they are stored in a cool and dry place.